Michael Gallagher

Michael Gallagher

assistant editor

A couple of weeks ago I was walking toward the garden supplies at Fred Meyer. I cut through the toy section. I didn’t pause or hesitate, but I got that spooky feeling like someone stepped on my grave.

I should have given the warning more heeding because it was not two days later that Finn said to me, “I want to get these toys out of my room, Dad.”

To be fair, Finn’s room became something of a toy storage site. Through precision planning and drill team like execution the boys are almost exactly four years apart. What this meant in practical terms was we never had to throw away anything Aidan outgrew or grew tired of.

It was always, “We’ll save this for Finn.”

As fate would have it the boys do not share the same fashion sense. Or as Finn would put it, he has a fashion sense. He has worn many of Aidan’s hand-me-downs, but there’s been stuff we just could not get him to wear that’s basically been stuffed into boxes and bags for some future dispersal to Goodwill or the clothing bank.

Toys were sorted into bins in this very useful toy storage shelving thing we picked up somewhere. At some point, there’s no video evidence of when or how this happened, the toy storage was put in Finn’s room. And there it has stayed.

They could film “Toy Story 5” in those storage bins because it is packed with sad stories of toys no longer enjoyed.

We’re talking Legos for the most part. I feel a little guilty about this but most of the 5,000 piece “Death Star” type kits were purchased for Aidan. In a way you had to admire those Lego engineers because they created these massive, elaborate kits where if you lost one BB-sized Lego piece out of the 5,000 in the box you could not complete the kit — each piece was absolutely integral to the whole. But in another, more meaningful way, you had to hate them with every ounce of your being.

The nice thing about siblings is they’re entirely different. Finn had little to no interest in recreating a picture on a box. He was more than happy to craft his own creations out of however many millions of Lego pieces he could dump on the floor at one time.

The other main category of toys are dinosaurs — many dinosaurs. Again, dinosaurs were far more — actually pretty much exclusively — Aidan’s thing.

Thinking about it, Finn deserves extra credit for putting up with someone else’s toys stored in his room for years.

It’s worked out because he’s displayed the emotional detachment needed when sorting through these toys with an eye toward a yard sale in the near future. He’s also coldly clinical in his assessment of the toys value.

“What do you think a kid would like most of all this stuff?” I asked Finn.

“Kids are not going to want any of this stuff,” Finn said. “None of this stuff is electronic.”

We’ve pretty much agreed we’re selling to the parents — those naive folks who feel what their kid really wants to do is snap plastic pieces together for hours on end instead of slipping on a VR headset and battling aliens on some far off planet, or watching 15 hours straight of YouTube videos.

Perhaps because I am too busy freaking out about Aidan moving out in little more than a month or because I’ve never been one to form attachments to things, but I’m handing the disposal of these childhood memories fairly well.

So, if you’re looking for the dinosaur of toy selections — literally and figuratively — keep your eye out for our yard sale in the coming weeks. I’m pretty sure Finn will cut you a deal. He wants his room back.

Contact managing editor Michael Gallagher at mgallagher@kvnews.com.


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